If you’re planning a trip to Greece, make sure to add Aegina to your itinerary. This beautiful island is located in the Saronic Gulf and offers a variety of activities for tourists to enjoy.
Interesting facts about Aegina:
- Aegina was one of the most important city-states in ancient Greece and was a major producer of silver coins.
- The Temple of Aphaia in Aegina is considered one of the best-preserved ancient Greek temples in the world.
- Aegina is known for its delicious pistachios, which are grown and harvested on the island.
- The island has several famous residents, including Greek composer Manos Hadjidakis and writer Nikos Kazantzakis.
- Aegina played a key role in the Greek War of Independence against the Ottoman Empire and was the site of several important battles.
- The island has a rich cultural heritage, with a variety of festivals and events throughout the year, including the Aegina Music Festival and the Aegina International Documentary Film Festival.
- Aegina has several important historical landmarks, including the Kolona Archaeological Site, the Markellos Tower, and the Monastery of Saint Nektarios.
- The island is home to several beautiful beaches, including Marathonas Beach, which is known for its crystal-clear waters and sandy shore.
- Aegina is easily accessible from Athens, with regular ferry service connecting the two cities.
- The island has a mild Mediterranean climate, with warm summers and mild winters, making it an ideal destination for year-round travel.
In this article, we’ll explore the 20 best things to do in Aegina, from historical landmarks to relaxing beaches.
Explore the Temple of Aphaia
The Temple of Aphaia is one of the most important historical sites in Aegina. The temple was built in the 5th century BC and is dedicated to the goddess Aphaia. It is located on a hill and offers stunning views of the surrounding area. Visitors can explore the ruins of the temple and learn about the history of the area through the information panels located throughout the site. The temple is well-preserved, and visitors can see the intricate details of the columns and other architectural features. A visit to the Temple of Aphaia is a must for anyone interested in ancient Greek history and architecture.
Take a Dip in the Thermal Springs
The thermal springs in Aegina are a popular attraction for those seeking relaxation and rejuvenation. The springs are located in the village of Agia Marina, and there are several spa facilities in the area. The waters are said to have therapeutic properties, and many visitors come to the springs to improve their health. The temperature of the water is warm but not too hot, and visitors can soak in the pools and enjoy the beautiful surroundings. A visit to the thermal springs is a great way to unwind and experience the natural beauty of Aegina.
Visit the Monastery of Saint Nektarios
The Monastery of Saint Nektarios is a beautiful Byzantine monastery located in the town of Aegina. The monastery is dedicated to Saint Nektarios, a popular saint in the Greek Orthodox Church. Visitors can explore the monastery and learn about its history and significance. The monastery features stunning architecture and beautiful frescoes, and it is a peaceful and serene place to visit. Visitors can attend services or simply admire the architecture and decor. The Monastery of Saint Nektarios is an important religious site in Aegina and a must-visit for those interested in history and culture.
Tour the Archaeological Museum of Aegina
The Archaeological Museum of Aegina is a must-visit for history buffs. The museum is located in the town of Aegina and features a collection of ancient artifacts from the island. Visitors can see pottery, jewelry, and sculptures from various periods of history. The museum is well-curated, and the exhibits are informative and engaging. The museum also has a beautiful garden where visitors can relax and enjoy the scenery. A visit to the Archaeological Museum of Aegina is a great way to learn about the island’s rich history and culture.
Discover the Markellos Tower
The Markellos Tower is a historical landmark in Aegina that dates back to the 17th century. The tower was built to protect the island from pirate attacks, and it has since been restored and turned into a museum. Visitors can tour the tower and learn about its history. The tower offers beautiful views of the surrounding area, and visitors can see artifacts and exhibits related to the tower’s history. The Markellos Tower is a unique and interesting attraction in Aegina and a must-visit for those interested in history and architecture.
Go for a Swim at Marathonas Beach
Marathonas Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Aegina. The beach features crystal-clear water and a sandy shore, and there are several beach bars and restaurants in the area. The beach is ideal for swimming and sunbathing, and visitors can also participate in water sports such as windsurfing and paddleboarding. The beach is family-friendly and a great place to spend a day relaxing in the sun.
Stroll Through the Aegina Town Market
The Aegina Town Market is a bustling market where locals sell fresh produce, handmade crafts, and souvenirs. Visitors can stroll through the market and enjoy the sights and sounds of the bustling marketplace. The market is open daily, and it’s a great place to experience the local culture. Visitors can find a variety of goods at the market, including fruits and vegetables, honey, olive oil, and spices. The market is also a great place to pick up souvenirs such as handmade jewelry and ceramics.
Visit the Church of Agios Nikolaos
The Church of Agios Nikolaos is a beautiful Greek Orthodox church located in the town of Aegina. The church dates back to the 17th century and features impressive frescoes and artwork. Visitors can attend services or simply admire the architecture and decor. The church is a peaceful and serene place to visit, and it’s a great way to learn about the religious traditions of the island.
Enjoy the View from the Panagitsa Church
The Panagitsa Church is located on a hill overlooking the town of Aegina, and it offers stunning views of the surrounding area. Visitors can hike up to the church or take a taxi, and the views from the top are well worth the effort. The church itself is beautiful, with intricate frescoes and beautiful architecture. Visitors can also enjoy the peaceful surroundings and take in the beauty of the island.
Hike Up Mount Oros
Mount Oros is the highest peak on Aegina and offers breathtaking views of the island and the surrounding sea. Visitors can hike up the mountain, and there are several trails to choose from. The hike is challenging but rewarding, and it’s a great way to experience the natural beauty of the island. Along the way, visitors can see a variety of flora and fauna, and they can enjoy the fresh air and beautiful scenery.
Take a Boat Tour to the Nearby Islands
Aegina is located near several other islands, including Hydra and Poros. Visitors can take a boat tour and explore these nearby islands, which offer their own unique attractions and activities. Some tours also include stops for swimming and snorkeling. The boat tours are a great way to experience the beauty of the Saronic Gulf and see the surrounding islands.
Try Traditional Greek Cuisine at a Taverna
Aegina is known for its delicious Greek cuisine, and there are several tavernas and restaurants where visitors can try traditional dishes. Some local specialties include grilled octopus, saganaki (fried cheese), and moussaka (a layered eggplant and meat dish). Visitors can also try fresh seafood and local wines. The tavernas are a great place to experience the local culture and cuisine.
Rent a Bike and Explore the Island
Renting a bike is a great way to explore Aegina at your own pace. The island has several bike rental shops, and there are many scenic routes to choose from. Biking is also a great way to get some exercise and enjoy the fresh air. Visitors can see a variety of sights on the island, including historical landmarks, beaches, and countryside.
Learn About the Pistachio Harvest
Aegina is known for its pistachios, and visitors can learn about the harvest and production process at several local farms. The pistachios are a popular souvenir, and they make a great snack or ingredient for cooking. Visitors can also taste different varieties of pistachios and learn about their nutritional benefits.
Watch the Sunset at Perdika
Perdika is a picturesque fishing village located on the southern coast of Aegina. The village offers stunning views of the sea and the surrounding landscape, and it’s a popular spot to watch the sunset. Visitors can enjoy a meal at one of the local restaurants or simply take in the scenery. The village is charming and peaceful, and it’s a great place to relax and unwind.
Attend a Festival or Event
Aegina hosts several festivals and events throughout the year, including a pistachio festival, a music festival, and a carnival. These events offer a chance to experience the local culture and traditions and are a great way to have fun and meet new people. Visitors can enjoy live music, food, and traditional dances, and they can also learn about the history and traditions of the island.
Visit the Kolona Archaeological Site
The Kolona Archaeological Site is a historical landmark that dates back to the Neolithic period. The site features the ruins of an ancient temple and a pillar, which is believed to have been a marker for the center of the ancient city. Visitors can explore the site and learn about the history of the area through the information panels located throughout the site. The site is well-preserved, and visitors can see the intricate details of the columns and other architectural features.
Go Diving or Snorkeling
Aegina has several great diving and snorkeling spots, including the wreck of the HMS Brittanic and the nearby island of Moni. Visitors can rent equipment or take a guided tour to explore the underwater world and see a variety of marine life. The waters around Aegina are clear and warm, and they offer an ideal environment for diving and snorkeling. Visitors can see a variety of fish, octopuses, and other marine creatures, and they can also explore underwater caves and reefs.
Explore the Abandoned Village of Paleochora
Paleochora is an abandoned village located in the mountains of Aegina. The village was once a thriving community, but it was abandoned in the 19th century due to piracy and other factors. Today, visitors can explore the ruins of the village and see the remains of the houses and churches. The village is eerie and haunting, and it offers a unique glimpse into the history of the island.
Go Horseback Riding on the Beach
Horseback riding is a fun and unique way to explore the beaches and countryside of Aegina. There are several horseback riding companies on the island, and they offer a variety of tours and experiences. Riding along the beach at sunset is a particularly memorable experience. Visitors can enjoy the beauty of the island while riding on horseback, and they can also learn about the history and traditions of the area.
In conclusion, Aegina is a beautiful and diverse island with something for everyone. From historical landmarks to natural beauty and outdoor activities, there are plenty of things to do and see. Visitors can enjoy the local culture, cuisine, and traditions, and they can also relax and unwind on the island’s beautiful beaches. By following this list of the 20 best things to do in Aegina, visitors can experience the best that the island has to offer.
What is the best time to visit Aegina?
The best time to visit Aegina is during the spring (April-June) or fall (September-November), when the weather is mild and the crowds are smaller.
How do I get to Aegina?
Aegina is easily accessible by ferry from Athens or other nearby islands. There are several ferry companies that operate regular routes to Aegina.
Is Aegina a good destination for families?
Yes, Aegina is a great destination for families. There are plenty of activities for kids, including swimming, hiking, and exploring historical landmarks.
What should I pack for a trip to Aegina?
Pack comfortable shoes, sunscreen, a hat, and lightweight clothing for warm weather. If you plan to swim or participate in water activities, bring a swimsuit and towel.
What is the local currency in Aegina?
The local currency in Aegina is the euro. Most businesses accept credit cards, but it’s always a good idea to carry some cash for small purchases.